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Helmets v. Air Vests in Eventing

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  • Helmets v. Air Vests in Eventing

    I've noticed that any time a high profile rider has a fall in which they are wearing an air vest, they are very quick to credit the air vest with "saving my life", give thanks that they were wearing the vest or speculate as to how much worse the injuries would have been had they not been wearing the vest. They name drop like they've just won the Daytona 500.

    On the other hand, sometimes it seems that when they have falls where they hit their heads, they either don't credit the helmet at all or almost reluctantly admit that perhaps, by some chance, the injury maybe could have been worse to some degree had they not been wearing a helmet.

    Added to that, you have a good number of ULR who voluntarily wear the vest but cling to their ugly top hats like baby's blankets.

    Given the overwhelming evidence that helmets do reduce the risk of serious injury from head trauma vs. the almost entirely anecdotal evidence wrt air vests, much of which is either proven to be completely false based on video evidence (see Oliver Townend) or is completely impossible based on the laws of physics as we know them, how do you explain the difference?
    Is it marketing? Is it not likely being told what to do?

  • #2
    When I see that I always wonder what "kick back" the rider gets from the company..... other than the vest itself.


    • #3
      Originally posted by NCRider View Post
      I've noticed that any time a high profile rider has a fall in which they are wearing an air vest, they are very quick to credit the air vest with "saving my life"...
      Should read: I've noticed that any time a high profile rider who is sponsored by Point Two has a fall in which they are wearing an air vest, they are very quick to credit the air vest with "saving my life"...


      • Original Poster

        I guess you're right. We don't hear quite so much from the Hit Air folks who do not seem nearly as shameless marketers. Either Hit Air's legal department has more teeth or Hit Air is just sitting back and benefitting from Point Two's misleading marketing. The Marketing approach from Hit Air seems to be "Hey we have this product and we think it might help-plus we're cheaper than the other guys"

        Could giving credit be in the sponsorship contract with Point Two?


        • #5
          Added to that, you have a good number of ULR who voluntarily wear the vest but cling to their ugly top hats like baby's blankets.
          Sad but so pitifully true.
          Click here before you buy.


          • #6
            Originally posted by NCRider View Post
            Either Hit Air's legal department has more teeth or Hit Air is just sitting back and benefitting from Point Two's misleading marketing.
            The Hit Air people aren't just sitting back, they're actually hitting back against Point Two's misleading advertising.

            British Advertising Standards Authority Upholds Hit-Air Complaint Against Point Two

            Originally posted by NCRider View Post
            Could giving credit be in the sponsorship contract with Point Two?
            I don't know. They haven't offered me a sponsorship.

            At the Olympics, a number of P2 endorsees chose not to wear their inflatables on XC. Actions speak louder than words, I guess.


            • #7
              Originally posted by NCRider View Post
              Added to that, you have a good number of ULR who voluntarily wear the vest but cling to their ugly top hats like baby's blankets.
              I've definitely noticed that. It makes me roll my eyes until they hurt when an ULR babbles about how they wear an air vest because they want to utilize all the best safety technology available...and then canter down the centerline in a cardboard hat. Give me a break. Without hypocritical statement, I would just find the difference in gear ironic. But those statements make me grind my teeth.
              "Last time I picked your feet, you broke my toe!"


              • #8
                It is personal choice what a person wears -- as long as they follow the rules. But the wearing of things that are sponsored -- i.e., free to someone who sells them for a profit-making company -- I think goes into a different category. For this reason, especially with so-called "safety" equipment, I think riders should be extremely careful what they say when said equipment deploys in a fall. Unless they are absolutely certain from more than just "feeling", they should refrain from anecdotal statements about safety equipment's performance, usefulness, preventative abilities, etc. because it leaves them wide open, I think, to legal action. I wouldn't say ANYTHING about a hat or vest I landed on when I fell if I were an agreed upon sponsoree. I think that invites trouble, personally. Not to mention it could be wrong....and I think, to be wrong, is more than just an "oh pshaw" moment, it could actually kill someone someday.
                Proud & Permanent Student Of The Long Road
                Read me: EN (http://eventingnation.com/author/annemarch/) and HJU (http://horsejunkiesunited.com/author/holly-covey/)